Science now knows why your mom might hate your boyfriend

If your mom hates your boyfriend, you aren’t alone. I mean, Lorelai Gilmore hated all of Rory’s boyfriends (except for Dean… at least in the beginning) and we can think of many other characters who had to deal with the same drama. Having said that, we just learned that Science maybe fanning the flames.

A recent study featured in Evolutionary Behavioral Sciences reveals that it isn’t only your mom who can have qualms with your partner. Your sister may be in on it, too. This has to do with something called the “Juliet effect” and yes, it is named after Shakespeare’s leading lady. That’s because it has to do with a mother, like Lady Capulet, wanting her daughter to marry a sensible, well-off man (like Paris).


Moms only want the best for their daughters because, deep down, they want to make sure that their daughter’s beau doesn’t mooch off their family. Instead, moms want their daughters to be with someone who will support the family and pass dependable genes onto their grandchildren. Daughters, on the other hand, may prefer being with someone who’s funny, sexy, and adventurous.

Sisters tend to side with mom because they can benefit from the situation. If their sister has a successful partner, then they can rest assured that they won’t ever need to lend them money. Their nieces and/or nephews will be taken care of and they won’t have to get involved. To confirm this, researchers had 279 women (it doesn’t say where they’re located) strate 133 characteristics. These traits were evaluated based on how important they are for their sister’s partner and for their own.

What resulted was that women preferred their sisters to have a responsible boyfriend, while they instead went for the sexy guy who’d provide them with a good time. (Sigh. Science isn’t always fair.)


While this study is very interesting, it leaves us wanting more. What about same-sex couples? Does the same apply or does more research need to be conducted? We’d also like to see this study conducted with more women and over an extended period of time. Overall, we find this specific study to be informative, but we wish the authors focused more on diversifying their participants.

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